It's been a huge year for us as a new family. Here's just a few highlights:
The big move - March 2008. After selling my home of two years in Ashgrove to a family at Oakleigh School, we set about shedding the excess 'stuff' and down-sizing for our move into Robert's two bedroom apartment in West End. It was an exciting time, and I'm sure many of our friends and family were looking on with scepticism. A year and a half down the track and we are enjoying living the good life in the inner-city. We're only renting, but do have some designs on creating a co-housing project with some like-minded locals. Watch this space!
Elsie Rose Pekin - born 9 July 2008. A breech water birth at home, with all three of our boys witnessing the arrival of their little sister into the world. It was a special time for us all - the love, spirit and warmth of that cold winter morning marked the beginning of a new era for us as a family, and for Robert and I as parents.
GWhiz Carshare - sold reluctantly August 2008. My business suffered the lack of my full attention and the lack of mutual support from my business partners. It saddened me that such a wonderful opportunity was lost. Perhaps the timing was wrong, perhaps the approach was not appropriate, perhaps there'll be another opportunity in the not too distant future to crank it up again ;-)
Purchase of the Little Red Baron - November 2008. Consolidating our way of life as a car-free family, we chose to buy a cargo bike or box bike. It's a Danish design and we bought it flat-packed from Tim at Cargo Cycles in Ballarat, Victoria. Robert had a great time putting it together himself. We also added an electric motor to tackle those heavy loads up the hills of Highgate Hill.
Woodford Folk Festival - December 2008/ January 2009. Overwhelmed with consumerism of the times, we felt uncomfortable celebrating Christmas the way many other families would have. Instead we chose to cycle to Woodford and enjoy a week of camping with the kids and seeing some great acts. Of course, Robert and I still had to make time for some speaking gigs at the Greenhouse, but it was fun and interactive and celebrated the community that is Woodford. The most exciting thing that happened was the formation of the Brisbane Transition Hub.
West End State School - February 2009. Joseph & Darcy started another year at our local school and while individually they are going well, a few changes in senior staff has created a mood of instability at the school. West End has a great reputation as an open-hearted school. The latest decisions have created some concern amongst the parents and we are working on creating a better place for our kids. The issue of home schooling, and even starting a small school in West End along the lines of Steiner education has come up a bit - we'll see what happens.
Food Connect reaches 1000 Boxes a week - April 2009. Since leaving GWhiz Carshare, I put a lot of my energies into community work with West End Community Association, but I felt the pull of the wonderful energy at Food Connect and it didn't take Robert much to convince me to come on board. It's been a great experience to witness the growth of our subscriber base and sales at Food Connect, and to watch Robert's idea seeded, take hold, and flourish. Now we are planning to help other regions initiate the local food movement. We like to call it the 'pollination' of Food Connect!
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Monday, April 13, 2009
How to avoid writing a book.
It's amazing what a rain-imposed, indoor Easter weekend can turn up. A few days of sleeping, reading, cooking, tending to bored boys, and a bit of pondering in-between has led to us launching a new enterprise AND starting a blog.
The enterprise is a new bike shop with a twist, and the blog is mostly about our daily adventures. We're just an ordinary, blended family seeking to live an authentic life, living in the moment, while respecting our future custodians of the planet - four of which are our children. We're not doing without, we're living within. Within our means and within the means of our environment.
The word sustainability is a strange one. Does it mean sustaining the status quo? Sustaining the current 'business-as-usual' way of life? Most people think that a few technical solutions will 'right the ship' - but I have a feeling that Buckminster Fuller was right. We need a new operating manual for spaceship Earth, because the current one is leading us into a rather large abyss!
Inspired by our community, our children, our mentors, our role models (you'll meet all of them here), we hope you enjoy taking this journey with us, and sharing our tales of transition to a post-carbon world.
The soundtrack to this blog is John Butler Trio's Grand National with a bit of Nick Drake's Bryter Later thrown in, and of course some Miles Davis fabulous blues.